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-A Baby with DNA from 3 Parents: Ethical Implications?

by Dr. D ~ September 28th, 2016

This is being hailed as a scientific breakthrough- a new procedure allowed a baby to be born with DNA from three different people- two women and a man. Here’s the story from New Scientist:

It’s a boy! A five-month-old boy is the first baby to be born using a new technique that incorporates DNA from three people…

The controversial technique, which allows parents with rare genetic mutations to have healthy babies, has only been legally approved in the UK. But the birth of the child, whose Jordanian parents were treated by a US-based team in Mexico, should fast-forward progress around the world, say embryologists.

The boy’s mother carries genes for Leigh syndrome, a fatal disorder that affects the developing nervous system.  …

<Read the whole article>

Response: The Jordanian couple is happy to have a child without the genetic problems that killed their previous children. One can be happy for them and yet question the ethics of this new technique.

I believe that the old adage- “Just because something can be done doesn’t mean it should” –may readily apply to this new scientific breakthrough.  Here are the reasons that the new procedure has some potential ethical problems:

1. Destruction of Embryos: According to the report, only 1 out of the 5 embryos produced by this procedure was viable.

2. Custom Order Babies?: This new technique might eventually be used to order up the  sex, hair color, eye color, potential height and build, intelligence, racial characteristics, and etc. that parents with enough money might prefer? This was one of  Hitler’s dreams/nightmares.

3. Who and How Many are the Actual Parents?: In this case 3 contributed to the makeup of this baby. The technique itself seems to be rather open ended on how many might actually contribute to the DNA of a future child? Who are the actual legal parents? Also, what will a birth certificate say?

This is just off the top of my head. Anyone else want to take a stab at this? My final questions are these: Can three people actually claim to be this child’s parents? This could be a legal nightmare. Even more important, how will a child respond later in life when they find out about their various parental DNA contributions? And finally, how will they identify themselves?             *Top

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-Archaeology: First Century Synagogue Ruins Confirm New Testament Accounts

by Dr. D ~ August 23rd, 2016


The discovery of a rural synagogue in Galilee dating from the 1st century lends support for the New Testament accounts of Jesus teaching in synagogues. For years scholars have doubted those accounts since it was hard to believe that a Jewish rabbi would allow an itinerate teacher like Jesus to come in an take over a regular worship service.  But the discovery demonstrates that the local rural synagogues were used for community meetings and for Torah readings and study.  Here’s the story from the Christian Post:

Motti Aviam, a senior researcher at the Kinneret Institute for Galilean Archaeology at the Kinneret College on the Sea of Galilee, explained in a statement the significance of the Tel Rechesh excavation find.

     "This is the first synagogue discovered in the rural part of the Galilee and it confirms historical information we have about the New Testament, which says that Jesus preached at synagogues in Galilean villages,"

explained Aviam, as reported by JNS.

Haaretz noted that while there have been seven other synagogues from the Second Temple period discovered before, the one at Tel Rechesh is the first to be found in a rural instead of urban setting.

     "Inscriptions and historical sources show that the synagogues of the period were used for meetings, Torah readings and study, rather than worship. They had neither Torah ark nor regular prayer services,"

reported Haaretz.

<Read the whole article>

Response: Notice that it is Jewish scholars that are confirming the NT record. An important distinction.                *Top

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-Independence Day 2016: Freedom Comes from God

by Dr. D ~ July 4th, 2016


Happy Independence Day 2016.

The following is our traditional message for the 4th of July:


Flags are flying, parades are moving, drinks are flowing, and politicians are speaking today in America.

240 years ago a message was confirmed by representatives of 13 colonies proclaiming their freedom, a freedom that was considered to be derived from God:

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

Much has been made of the variety of beliefs held by the founders of this country but their words and convictions remain not only on paper but also in the hearts of the people.

Declaration of Independence: The Emphasis Upon God

When it comes to the Declaration of Independence, the words- “by their Creator” were a major part of the message, the subject, and the emphasis.

Many secularists and atheists today want to de-emphasize the role of faith in the founding of this country to the point that many are attempting to actually rewrite history itself. For them, God could have easily been left out of the document with little or no effect.

But in the context of 1776, those words were the whole linchpin of the document and appealed to as the ultimate authority and source for the rights of the Americans to rebel against the King of England.

In the context of the 18th century the Europeans believed that their Kings reigned and ruled ‘by Divine right’ under the authority of God and were His direct representatives. In fact, the King of England was also the head of the church and was supposed to defend the Christian faith against heresy and all enemies. In that cultural context, to rebel against the King was tantamount to rebelling against God the Creator himself.

In the Declaration the founders made it clear that they were not rebelling against God but that the Creator was actually the ultimate authority they were appealing to saying that their ‘rights’ were derived directly from the Creator and not given to them by the King of England or some parchment or Parliament.

It was a radical document at the time and changed the whole course of human history and ‘the Creator’ was part and parcel of the Declaration of Independence and the ultimate authority appealed to in the whole process.            *Top

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-Reacting to Those Who Are Blaming Christians for Orlando?

by Dr. D ~ June 24th, 2016

Eric Metaxas

   (Eric Metaxas: Image source)

Here’s a good article by Eric Metaxas: “Blaming Christians for Orlando?

In it he references an editorial by the New York Times, The Daily Beast, and reactions by CNN’s Anderson Cooper all piling on and somehow assigning blame to Christians for the actions of the radical Muslim terrorist in killing 49 folks in Orlando. We also cited several others who blamed Christians in an article on our main blog last week.

The best part of his editorial is at the end when he talks about how Christians should react to this bewildering attack on the Christian community:

So when the Anderson Coopers of the world insist loving people means approving of everything they do, we must reply that love often means exactly the opposite.

No, we’re not responsible for what happened in Orlando. But it’s our love and proclamation of God’s grace, not our angry self-defense, that will prove it.



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-The Bible and The Quran: Some Major Contrasts

by Dr. D ~ April 2nd, 2016


There are some obvious differences between the Bible and the Quran. Some of those major contrasts revolve around the teaching contained in the two and others around references to characters and history.

One glaring difference is that the Quran is one book written by one man in one lifetime while the Bible spans thousands of years and is actually comprised of 66 separate books written by as many as 40 different authors.

Here’s a very good recent article I ran across that lists 6 major differences and contrasts between the two sacred books representing the two largest world religions:

Six Startling Contrasts Between the Bible and the Quran” by Jeff Sanders, PJ Media

Content Headings:

1. Conversion Stories

2. God’s Compassion

3. God’s Grace

4. Descriptions of Heaven

5. Views of Women

6. Teaching of History

<Read what is under all six and the whole article>

Response: We have written about the differences between Christianity and Islam when it comes to the teaching of God’s grace and compassion before. The different views about the status of women is common knowledge and displayed daily in the cultural treatment of women in major Muslim dominated countries today. Heaven or Paradise according to Muhammad and the Quran seems to be oriented towards satisfying male physical desires more than anything else.

The real eye opener in the article is in the section on history. Major historical errors and anachronisms along with outright ignorance are openly on display in the Quran. Here’s a few of the more shocking mistakes listed in the article:

Moses is called an "apostle" in Surah 43:47. "Apostle" is a Greek word, popularized long after the time of Moses (c. 1446 B.C. …

Several times Muhammad says that Haman was a co-conspirator with Pharaoh to thwart Moses (Surah 40:25; 28:6,8,38; 29:39). … In the Bible Haman was a minor ruler under the Persian King Xerxes (Ahasuerus) in the fifth century before Christ. That would be 1000 years after the time of Moses! …

In Surah 19:27, Muhammad got Mary the mother of Jesus and Miriam the sister of Moses and Aaron confused. Here he calls the mother of Jesus "the sister of Aaron." The problem is that the two ladies are actually separated by over 1000 years of history.

And the prophet of Islam also states that Pharaoh threatened to "crucify" Moses (Surah 7:123). Joseph warns his fellow prisoners that Pharaoh will "crucify" them (12:41). Again, these are anachronisms. Crucifixion never existed in Egypt in the time of Joseph or Moses. It was created by the Romans around 200 B.C.

The entire article is excellent and well worth reading if you really want to know some of the major contrasts between the Bible and the Quran along with some of the differences between Christianity and Islam.                 *Top


For more on the differences between Christianity and Islam see our previous articles:

"-Islam and Christianity: Some Major Differences"

"-Comparing Islam and Christianity #7: The Crucifixion and Resurrection of Jesus"

"-Dueling Jesuses: Isa of Islam Vs. The Son of God of Christianity"

"Comparing Islam and Christianity #6 -The Divinity of Jesus"

"Comparing Islam and Christianity #5 -Miracles and Spiritual Gifts"

"Comparing Islam and Christianity #4 -The Holy Spirit"

"Comparing: Islam and Christianity #3 -The Virgin Birth of Jesus"

"Comparing: Islam and Christianity #2 -The Righteousness and Justice of God"

"Comparing: Islam and Christianity #1 -God’s Love?"

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